Posts on Jan 1970

Traffic Unit Visits Parents At Blue Ridge Elementary

The Dalton Police Department's Traffic Unit visited Blue Ridge Elementary School on Thursday to talk to parents about car seat safety. The car seat check was coordinated with Safe Kids Dalton and firefighters from the Dalton Fire Department and the Whitfield County Fire Department.  

The officers and firefighters involved with Safe Kids are all certified child safety seat technicians. They spoke to parents waiting to pick up their children at the school and offered to check their child safety seats for proper function and installation. They also spoke to parents about Georgia law which requires all children under the age of 8 to be restrained in a child safety seat or booster seat. Safe Kids Dalton handed out 4 car seats to parents in need of one. Approximately 100 parents were contacted by officers or firefighters.

The TEU will be conducting future car seat checks at other elementary schools throughout the city for the remainder of the year.  

Below: Officers and firefighters from the DPD, DFD, and WCFD check car seats at Blue Ridge Elementary School


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Perhaps Unwittingly, Drivers Make Improper Turns On Glenwood

Your next fast food run might include meeting a police officer if you fail to obey the traffic rules near the Taco Bell and Bi-Lo shopping center on Glenwood Avenue. The Dalton Police Department and also the city’s Public Works Department have been receiving numerous complaints of drivers making improper turns in the area. Crash statistics compiled by the DPD Traffic Unit show that there have been 15 crashes in the area since January with minor injuries reported.

A recent redesign of the intersection of Glenwood Avenue and the Highway 41 bypass changed some of the neighboring roads and lanes and many drivers don’t realize that routes they may have been taking for years are now improper. 

Drivers traveling southbound on Glenwood cannot turn left into the Taco Bell parking lot. The lane in front of the restaurant is not a turn lane and is hashed off in yellow which means traffic may not turn there. The Traffic Unit recommends that drivers proceed further south to an intersection and turn back north to access the Taco Bell.  Additionally, drivers exiting the Taco Bell onto Glenwood must turn right.  Left turns out of the parking lot are illegal and there is currently a sign notifying drivers to only turn right.


Facing Glenwood from the Taco Bell parking lot, a RIGHT TURN ONLY sign can be seen. Also seen are yellow hash marks showing that drivers may not turn left across the center lane

Northbound drivers on Glenwood attempting to turn left into the Bi-Lo shopping center often use the southern exit from the parking lot to turn in and avoid waiting for the traffic light at the intersection with Smith Industrial Boulevard.  However, both lanes coming out of the parking lot are exit only and turning left there crosses a yellow hashed area.  Northbound drivers must proceed to the turn lane at Smith Industrial Boulevard to access the shopping center.


Looking north on Glenwood towards the lower exit from the Bi-Lo parking lot, you can see hashed lines making a left turn illegal

The DPD Traffic Unit recently observed traffic in the area on August 20th and observed 75 violations in an hour.  The Public Works Department will be posting signage in the area to clarify these rules and the DPD’s Traffic Unit plans to increase patrols in the area to educate motorists and enforce these rules.


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Officers Promoted At Public Safety Commission Meeting

Two Dalton Police Department officers had their promotions confirmed by unanimous vote of the Public Safety Commission on Tuesday morning.  Shaun Scott was promoted to the rank of lieutenant and Jason Thompson was promoted to the rank of sergeant.

Lt. Scott has served the department for more than 15 years including the last five years as a sergeant supervising a patrol shift.  During that time he also served as coordinator of the department’s Field Training Officer (FTO) program.  Lt. Scott has bachelor’s degrees in accounting from Liberty University and organizational management from Covenant College.  He also holds an associate’s degree in psychology from Dalton State College.  Lt. Scott will now serve a shift commander in the patrol division. 

Sergeant Thompson has served the Dalton Police Department for 11 years and served with the US Marshal’s Service and the Lafayette Police Department before that.  Most recently, Sgt. Thompson was assigned as a detective in the department’s drug unit.  He holds a bachelor’s degree in forensic investigation from Jacksonville State University.  Sgt. Thompson is now assigned as a shift supervisor in the patrol division.  

Below: Lt. Shaun Scott (left) and Sgt. Jason Thompson (right)


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ID Of Suspects Sought In Purse Theft, $1,300 Credit Card Fraud

The Dalton Police Department is asking for the public’s help with identifying two men who apparently worked together to steal a woman’s purse from the mall.  The victim’s credit card was then used to rack up more than $1,300 in fraudulent charges at stores in Calhoun, Adairsville, and Kennesaw.

The theft happened on August 22nd at the A To Z Concepts kiosk at Walnut Square Mall. The victim did not realize her purse was stolen, however, until after 4:00 pm when her credit card company called to alert her to unusual activity on her account.  After realizing her purse was missing, the victim checked the kiosk’s surveillance video and saw two Hispanic males approach the kiosk at approximately 10:30 am. One of the men, wearing a navy blue polo shirt with white stripes on the collar and sleeves and a blue baseball hat appeared to work to distract the employees of the kiosk.  While this was happening, a second male wearing a white t-shirt and dark rimmed glasses picked up and moved the victim’s purse several times as if he was looking at cell phones in the case underneath it.  Then the man picked up the purse and walked away quickly. Pictures of the suspects are included below.

Later in the day, the victim’s credit card was used to make large purchases at several stores along I-75 south of Dalton.  In Calhoun, the card was used for more than $380 at Home Depot and more than $180 at the Coach Outlet.  In Adairsville, the card was used for more than $15 at a Burger King.  In Kennesaw, the car was used for a pair of purchases totaling approximately $240 at a Famous Footwear and for nearly $530 at Macy’s.

Anyone with information on the identity of the two men is asked to contact Detective Aaron Simpson at 706-278-9085, dial 9 and enter extension 253. 

Below: Surveillance images of the two suspects (click thumbnail to see a larger version)


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DPD Hiring For Purchasing Agent

The City of Dalton is currently taking applications for the position of Purchasing Agent with the Dalton Police Department. This is a full-time (40) hour per week position.

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Seats Open For December Teen Driving Course

There are still seats available for the December session of the DPD’s Collision Avoidance Training (CAT) defensive driving program for teens. The courses is offered quarterly and spots are available for the December 2015 class which will meet on December 11th and 12th. The deadline to apply is October 30th. The class costs $25 per participant. The DPD hosted the course for the first time in December 2014 and was met with positive reviews.

The CAT program is an advanced defensive driving and vehicle control program designed for teenage drivers. The program is open to all teens at least 16 years old with a valid Class D driver’s license. Parents are encouraged to enroll their teens several months prior to their 16th birthday This program does not fulfill the Joshua Law requirements.

The 10-hour course is taught by trained and certified Dalton Police Officers over a two-day period including 2 hours of classroom instruction and 8 hours of one-on-one behind-the-wheel training. Classroom instruction will be held on Friday evenings and behind-the-wheel training will be held on Saturdays. Registration fee for the two-day course is $25.00 per student. The class will be limited to ten (10) drivers per class. Additional classes can be scheduled for groups.

Students must use their own (or parent/guardian’s) vehicle for behind-the-wheel training. The idea is for the students to learn to handle the vehicle they will typically be driving. Behind-the-wheel training is conducted on a closed course, at speeds of 35 mph and below. Students may use cars, trucks, minivans or SUV’s, but vehicles with modified suspension, oversized tires or other unsafe components will not be permitted on the driving range.

At the end of the class, students who have successfully completed all driving range skills will receive a Certificate of Completion. Certificates can be presented to most auto insurance companies for discounted insurance premiums, or proudly displayed.

The curriculum was developed around the fact that most crashes involving teenage drivers are classified as “avoidable” and are due to a lack of experience or training.

This course is designed to give the student a better understanding of the responsibilities and liabilities of the driver, vehicle dynamics, friction and the effects of intoxicating substances on their ability to operate a vehicle.

Students will work with law enforcement on the following life-saving skills during the behind the wheel section of the course:

  • Evasive maneuvers
  • Threshold/emergency braking
  • Forward and reverse serpentine
  • Cornering and backing

For more information on this program or to enroll your teen, please contact PFC David Saylors at 706-278-9085 Ext. 124,

Application Form 1

Application Form 2

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DPD Re-Arrests Man Taking “Upskirt” Photos

The Dalton Police Department arrested 44 year old Heath Shields Franklin on Thursday on a charge of unlawful surveillance after learning that he was following women in Walmart on Shugart Road and taking pictures underneath their clothes. Franklin had been released from prison less than 24 hours before his arrest after completing his sentence for multiple counts of sexual battery and unlawful surveillance for touching women and taking “upskirt” photos while working at a Dalton convenience store in 2012.

On Thursday afternoon at approximately 4:00 pm, the Dalton Police Department was contacted by state probation officers who were supervising Franklin. After Franklin failed to check in as expected on Thursday morning, state probation officers used tracking data from his ankle monitor to track him to the Walmart. After contacting Franklin they learned that he had bought a new cell phone at the store.  He agreed to let them check his phone and they found a number of photos of women’s buttocks and also pictures of at least four women taken from angles that allowed the camera to view underneath the legs of their shorts or skirts. Probation officers brought Franklin back to their office where he was interviewed by a Dalton detective.  He was arrested and charged with one count of unlawful surveillance.

Investigators are reviewing surveillance video from the store and working to determine how many women may have been photographed inappropriately by Franklin.  A picture of Franklin is included with this release.  Anyone who believes they may have been photographed or had contact with him is asked to call Detective Aaron Simpson at 706-278-9085, dial 9 and enter extension 253. 

Below: Heath Shields Franklin

Heath Franklin

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Never Give Your Bank Account Info Over The Phone

Another day, another phone scam.  

The DPD recently got a report from a Dalton resident of a phone scammer who called claiming to be from the United States government.  The scammer said he was from the Government Grants office and had a grant of $9,000 to give to the complainant, and all that the complainant had to do to get the money was to give the caller a bank account or credit card number to deposit the money.

Fortunately, the potential victim in this case recognized this call as a scam and disconnected.  The number listed on caller ID was 202-381-2728 which is indeed a Washington, DC area code but when called it is not a working number. Phone scammers can fake their number on Caller ID.  

Never give your bank or personal information to someone who calls you over the phone. A legitimate caller will not ask you for that information.

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Remember: Turn Your Lights On When Raining!

It's been a rainy week in Dalton and there's more in the forecast today. The DPD's Traffic Unit has reported seeing a lot of drivers on the road without their headlights and tail lights on in the downpours.  Not only is this dangerous, it's also against Georgia law.  

State law requires drivers to turn on their lights when raining. Many cars now have daytime running lights, but drivers of these vehicles still must turn on their lights when raining to illuminate their tail lights.  This makes it easier for other drivers to see your car in the rain.  

The DPD Traffic Unit also reminds you that wet roads are slick roads. Allow extra stopping distance between your car and the car in front of you when it's raining. Be safe out there, and buckle up! 

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DPD Seeks Coke Machine Bandit

The Dalton Police Department is asking for the public’s help identifying a man who broke into a vending machine at a Dalton hotel and stole an undetermined amount of money.  The incident was captured by the hotel’s surveillance system and the suspect’s picture is included below.

The incident happened July 11th at 2:45 am at the Quality Inn on College Drive. The suspect broke into the machine taking cash and coins.  The suspect wore a blue t-shirt and a dark colored ball cap with shorts and blue Nike shows with a white swoosh.  The suspect also has several distinctive tattoos. One on his left ankle appears to be flames and he has lettering on the back side of his right forearm and on his left triceps.  He left the hotel in a red older model Ford Ranger truck.  The doors appear to be different colors from the rest of the truck.

Anyone with information on this incident or the identity of the suspect is asked to please contact Detective Brian Shirley at 706-278-9085, dial 9 and enter extension 189. 

Below: The suspect and his truck pictured by hotel surveillance

Suspect Image #1Suspect Image #2Suspect Image #3Additional Image of the Truck #1Additional Image of the Truck #2

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